The UAE Corporate Tax: Navigating the New Landscape for Real Estate Stakeholders 

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The United Arab Emirates (UAE) recently enacted a corporate tax scheme in Dubai that has significant implications for real estate stakeholders, particularly developers, contractors, subcontractors, brokers, and others involved in this sector. Knowing and complying with this new tax environment is critical for maximizing tax liabilities and optimizing real estate activities in this market.  

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Navigating the UAE Corporate Tax Law  

Finding out who is involved in a real estate transaction is the first step towards properly navigating the corporation tax laws in the United Arab Emirates. These parties involved are classified as either juridical or natural people, and they comprise developers, contractors, subcontractors, and brokers. Natural people, on the other hand, relate to lone establishments, civil companies, or independent contractors doing business inside the United Arab Emirates. Juridical persons are businesses with distinct legal identities.  

Tax Implications of Juridical Entities  

Corporate tax is applied to resident juridical companies based on their worldwide income. Depending on their property holdings and operations, free-zone companies may be eligible for exemptions. For example, if a free zone company participates in non-UAE-based activities, it may be able to completely escape corporation tax.  

Tax Scenarios for Natural Persons  

Like other brokers and contractors, real estate brokers and contractors are exempt from certain revenue thresholds; small business relief for revenues up to AED 3 million is available until 2026; and individuals who work in this industry and earn more than AED 375,000 annually are subject to corporate tax at 9%.  

Permanent Establishments (PEs)  

Permanent Establishments (PE) are non-resident real estate companies operating in the United Arab Emirates that are required to pay tax on income generated from activities carried out within the country’s borders. Therefore, corporation tax is due by non-resident firms on any income earned inside UAE borders. 

Exclusions and inclusions  

A few property-related activities are not subject to taxes. For example, being the owner of or using commercial real estate that is situated in a free zone is not acceptable. On the other hand, brokerage fees, commissions, and earnings from real estate agency operations are taxable as corporation income. 

Impact on Real Estate Development and Investment  

The corporation tax system in the United Arab Emirates has a significant impact on real estate investment and development. Businesses involved in real estate development, management, or construction are liable for corporate tax. All sales, purchases, renovations, and rentals generate taxable income. 

Capital Gains and Development  

Companies operating in the UAE are required to pay tax on any capital gains obtained from selling properties, but individual real estate owners are free from corporation tax on capital gains and income collected from investments.  

Mitigating Liability for UAE Corporation Tax  

Property-owning companies that want to reduce their exposure to UAE corporate income tax might want to restructure their ownership model. One option is to use de-enveloping, which involves transferring legal ownership of properties into the names of individual shareholders rather than corporate structures. This will shift tax liabilities from corporations to individual shareholders, benefiting from the absence of individual income tax in the UAE as they shift liability onto themselves and their associated tax bills.  


Real estate players face challenging terrain when navigating the corporate tax framework in the United Arab Emirates. For real estate stakeholders to navigate this challenging terrain with ease, they must comprehend the tax ramifications for both juridical and natural persons, as well as the inclusions and exclusions that may apply. Contact ebs Chartered Accountants for the best assistance with UAE real estate corporate taxation.  

How can corporate tax consultants in Dubai help you?  

As one of the top corporate tax advisors in Dubai, ebs Chartered Accountants can assist you with the methods listed below.  

  • Tax Eligibility Assessment: Recognize your exemptions and responsibilities. 
  • Tax Planning Strategies: customized plans designed to minimize tax obligations. 
  • Compliance Support: Comply with UAE tax laws without difficulty.  
  • Assistance with Registration: Easily get help with registration requirements.  
  • Reporting and Record-Keeping: Maintain organization by keeping precise records.  
  • Smooth Auditing: Take advantage of our stress-free audit help for additional peace of mind.  

Get in touch with us if you need help navigating the corporate tax environment in the United Arab Emirates for your real estate endeavours.  

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